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My Introspective

by Laurus Nobilis
My BrainCast

Supply Chain

Supply Chain Management:

Business Information (E)


What was the evolution history of supply chain management? What are the main components of supply chain? How big is the importance of supply chain integration?


Posted: Oct 2011

Business information in supply chain management plays a crucial role. Without proper information all resources are useless. Company can not plan production, without information about demand. Transport can not distribute product, without accurate information about customer’s addresses and terms of delivery. Marketing wouldn’t be able to create promotion without proper creation of campaigns.

Simply, the product cannot flow from supplier to end consumer without a wide range of different information. The information links every component of the supply chain together. Information flows in two directions, from supplier to the customer and vice versa.

Business Information

Supply chain management plays a very important role within the company. The supply chain generate most of the costs of the company, due to the width and complexity of the function (manufacturing, warehouse, distribution). Any inefficiency can create tremendous negative impact to the company. On the other hand, good supply chain management can bring huge benefits and competitive advantage to the company.

The format of this information is changing through different time periods. Until '80s, the activities were based mostly on paper, since information technologies were not at the sufficient development level.

Also, information technology was very expensive. This type of information flow was very slow, limited in range, with narrow analytical options. The possibility of errors was considerable.

Today, informative technology advances rapidly. Hardware support with devices such scanners, hand held terminals with remote connectivity, WiFi, RFID, GPS etc are giving countless possibility to upgrade the information content, quality and speed.

System support, through advanced enterprise resource management systems, such as SAP, is integrating into every segment of the business. Further more, the pace of information technology advances rapidly everyday. The type of information that travels up and down the supply chain varies widely in type and scope. The following chart shows the major categories of information normally shared, and provides some examples of each.


Types of Supply Chain Information:

Types of Supply Chain Information














Accuracy of information is of the crucial importance. Fast sharing of different information is useless without accuracy. Distorted information can cause more damage than having no information at all. Incorrect information in the supply chain can lead to a number of hazards, such as excessive inventory, write offs, stock out, unsatisfied customers who didn’t receive their products, inefficient transportation routes, increased costs, etc. Information is the lubricant of complex mechanism of supply chain that enables efficient operation.


Continue Reading:

Overview of Supply Chain Components
Historical Development of Supply Chain
Traditional and Modern View to Supply Chain
Supply Chain Activities
Order Processing
Demand and Supply Planning
Inventory Management
Customer Care
Integrated Supply Chain
Financial Resources
Integration vs. Non-Integration


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